Crucialfest 6 Announces Lineup; Russian Circles, SubRosa, Mos Generator, Fuzz Evil, CHRCH and More to Play

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 10th, 2016 by JJ Koczan

Fucking a, Crucialfest 6. You win this round.

The Salt Lake City-based festival has announced its 2016 lineup, and it’s both all over the place stylistically and awesome, so kudos all around. My understanding is early-bird tickets are on their way to being sold out, and with the likes of Russian Circles, SubRosa, Mos Generator, Form of Rocket, CHRCH, Mammoth Salmon and a slew of others I both have and haven’t heard of, I can’t say it’ll be a surprise when they’re gone. Hell, Ape Machine are gonna be there. You know it’s a party when they show up.

I’m not sure if this is the full roster of bands or if Crucialfest 6 will be adding more, but it’s a killer assemblage as it is, as the PR wire can confirm:

crucialfest 6 poster

Crucialfest 6 lineup announced

Salt Lake City, UT

Russian Circles, Helms Alee, SubRosa, Wizard Rifle, Mos Generator, Theories to headline Crucialfest 6 with historic reunion sets from SLC natives Form of Rocket, Ether, The New Transit Direction

When: June 15-18, 2016
Where: The Urban Lounge, Metro Bar, Kilby Court, The Art Garden
Tickets: -Early bird discount wristbands still available

Crucialfest announces its most incredible lineup to date with Crucialfest 6! This June 15-18th CF6 brings the heavies to downtown Salt Lake City. Hosting 10 showcases and 50+ bands over 4 days (plus a warm up show June 11th), CF6 promises to deliver high-energy live performances from local and national bands alike, and a memorable experience for all. Crucialfest aims to heat up the local rock/metal scene & the touring environment for Utah bands by putting them on the stage with internationally recognized bands. It revitalizes the local scene with reunion sets from some of Salt Lake’s most influential bands. Info and tickets at:

Confirmed Lineup:
Russian Circles, Form of Rocket, The New Transit Direction, Ether, Helms Alee, SubRosa, Wizard Rifle, Mos Generator, Theories, Gaytheist, INVDRS, The Drip, InAeona, Immortal Bird, Ape Machine, Greg Bennick, CHRCH, Colombian Necktie, Baby Gurl, Elephant Rifle, Heartless Breakers, Fuzz Evil, Mammoth Salmon, Throes, Oxcross, Worst Friends, Mercy Ties, Muscle Beach, Sol, Bereft, Die Off, Handicapitalist, Thunderfist, I Buried The Box with your Name, MKNG FK, Donner Party House, Discoid A, Exes, Moon of Delirium, Turbo Chugg, Cicadas, Wulf Blitzer, Yeti Warlord, Former Tides, The Future of the Ghost, Scary Uncle Steve, Turtle Neck Wedding Dress, Cactus Pharm

Russian Circles, Memorial (2013)

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Bereft, Leichenhaus: Crafting a New Abyss

Posted in Reviews on June 29th, 2012 by JJ Koczan

Released by The End Records at the end of April (it would be awesome if they only put out records the last week of every month, but I’m pretty sure that’s not how it actually works), the debut full-length from Los Angeles death/doomers Bereft, Leichenhaus, tells a lot of its story in its title. The German word for “funeral home,” Leichenhaus immediately lays out a lot of the thematic the band is working with, and one is perhaps left wondering if they went with the German instead of the English to avoid comparisons to the Norwegian band Funeral, who were among the pivotal acts in this genre – hence “funeral doom.” Similar flourishes of melodicism persist, though they’re hardly unique to these two acts – the band also shares its moniker with an Esoteric song – and Bereft’s influence from the extreme end of metal comes through in the pedigree of its members. Guitarist/vocalist Charles Elliott comes to Bereft via death metallers Abysmal Dawn (full disclosure: he’s also a publicist at Nuclear Blast with whom I’ve had dealings for years now), and bassist Derek Rydquist is formerly of Summer Slaughter Tour veterans The Faceless. Drummer Derek Donley and guitarist Sacha Dunable shared a tenure in Graviton, who released an album called Massless last year on Translation Loss, and Dunable is also of jazzy neo-prog metal technicians Intronaut. As complex as the history if its players might be, the sound of Bereft is equally cohesive, each member clearly well versed in plodding tempos and sorrowful melodies. If I’m honest, I’ve been kind of hoping a band like Bereft would come along for a while now and contrast all the cleaner-sung blues-derived doom that seems to be the staple of the genre these days. Nothing wrong with that stuff, but death/doom’s extremity is like a touchstone for how much misery you can actually pack into a song, and as Leichenhaus – at seven tracks/40 minutes – feels about twice as long, it’s pretty clear the foursome are doing something right.

The album is sandwiched by crushingly atmospheric instrumental pieces. First of them, “Corpse Flower” is a suitable lead-in, caked in feedback and ploddingly drummed, long sustained, detuned guitars ringing out a wash of noise and eyes-to-the-ground riffing. We’re still a ways off from Elliott’s first vocal, which arrives almost a minute into the second track, “Mentality of the Inanimate,” and begins to show more of where Bereft’s balance between death and doom metals lies on their debut album. His and Dunable’s guitars are quick to harmony, which would seem to be an indication both of melodic influence from classic European doom, and the technical awareness that current American extreme metal mandates. They know how to play guitar, is what I’m saying, and it’s just that here they’re doing it slowly and letting the parts breathe, rather than cramming scales in where they need not be. Perhaps most telling of all the elements in conveying the band’s death metal roots, though, are the vocals. Not just that they’re growls, but also how those growls are executed. Elliott’s guttural rasp on “Mentality of the Inanimate,” on “Withered Efflorescence,” which follows, and almost everywhere else it appears on Leichenhaus, is sharply ended. Rather than hold them in sustained defeat, he cuts his lines off cold. Dunable, Donley and Rydquist are all credited with backing vocals, and sure enough, there are variations in the types of screams and growls used – “Withered Efflorescence” is more complex in general and also features the first of several acoustic guitar parts, but especially around the three-minute mark it’s apparent that there’s more than one singer in the band. If that kind of vocal turns you off outright, Bereft won’t change your mind, but with mid-period Akerfeldtian clarity in his growl, Elliott is more than capable of conveying emotion and acting as more than just another member of the rhythm section. The natural shift from the return of that muti-vocal interplay to a sustained melodic guitar solo speaks to the emotionality of the vocals and indeed the song as a whole.

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